The Devils Ride Renewed

June 13, 2012

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The Discovery Channel announced Tuesday that The Devils Ride, a campy parody of outlaw motorcycle clubs, is officially a hit and has been renewed for a second “season.” The first season lasted six episodes and it is not clear which of the original cast members will return. They are all terrible actors.

The Discovery press release said, in part:

Discovery announced today renewal of its hit Tuesday night series The Devils Ride for a second season. The Devils Ride goes inside the world of motorcycle clubs with the members of San Diego’s The Laffing Devils. Airing after Deadliest Catch, The Devils Ride averaged over 2 million viewers each week. Produced for Discovery by Bischoff Hervey Entertainment with Eric Bischoff and Jason Hervey serving as Executive Producers, The Devils Ride wraps up with its season finale tonight at 10 p.m. e/p as the club sees a final showdown between ex-president Gipsy and new club head Billy the Kid.

“All season long trouble as been brewing within the club’s ranks as members were forced to take sides between the warring leaders. And while power struggles persist, personal struggles tear at the club’s war vets, many of whom wrestle with post-traumatic stress.”

War vets and PTSD? So really, the producers have no shame.

Reality

From the opening credits of episode one, The Devils Ride has been insightful about three piece patch motorcycle clubs as Jersey Shore is insightful about Leonardo Da Vinci and as Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Killer is insightful about the Civil War. Nevertheless, young and middle aged men tuned in each week to learn what the motorcycle club world is “really like.” For example, in episode five viewers learned that shrewd patch holders avoid gang enhancement charges by simply stripping off their cuts before punching a fool in the mouth. In earlier episodes viewers learned it is no thing to hit people in public as long as your crime is being recorded by a television crew.

This season, The Devils Ride told a simple-minded story about a San Diego motorcycle club called The Laffing Devils. The show’s scripts assert that the club is about five-years-old. The club has been around since at least 2010. It was founded by an alleged bounty hunter named Tommy Quinn whose name on the road is Gipsy – spelled like that, in the fashion of Ebonics. Numerous critics of the show have stated that Quinn is married to a San Diego cop and that as that fact became well-known in the club world the Laffing Devils were told to dump him. The Aging Rebel has been unable to verify that Quinn is either a bounty hunter or married to a cop.

LDMC patch holders like to meet in wine bars where they smoke expensive cigars while sipping expensive glasses of wine. The cigars and wine epitomize this production. Anyone who has ever had either a good glass of wine or a good cigar knows that the two flavors do not mix particularly well. Neither the cast members nor the producers seem to care. Instead, the wine, cigars, cute hats, immaculate cuts and expensive motorcycles – apparently, nobody in this club rides a Dyna – all represent what the show is really about: Conspicuous consumption. The point of this thing, after all, is to convince people to buy shit they do not need. And, the most important job of the cast members has been to model that shit like the long legged glamour girls on The Price is Right model fur hats.

Television Writing

The show’s first season was all about the expulsion of club founder Quinn, his replacement by a vacuous martinet named “Billy the Kid” and Quinn’s establishment of another motorcycle club called the Sinister Mob Syndicate MC as an act of revenge. It was a professional wrestling story arc. Coincidentally, the producers have backgrounds in professional wrestling.

The decision to renew the show appears to have been made almost a month ago. Since then the program and its producers, Bischoff Hervey Entertainment Television, have unabashedly chased fame. That chase has involved a contrived feud with Sons Of Anarchy show runner Kurt Sutter, optimistic press releases, the peddling of many tee shirts and hoodies and increasingly tense relations with real San Diego area motorcycle clubs.

Just before Memorial Day Discovery began selling The Devils Ride clothing. The expensive rags include a “Devils Ride Part Of The Brotherhood” tee-shirt. The shirt is intended to symbolize that the wearer has found “a brotherhood like the one you found in the military…. What do you do when you have lived life all pumped up on a level of intensity that normal life can’t match? The Devils Ride Part Of The Brotherhood T-shirt is about the answer to those questions. The Laffing Devils motorcycle club is largely full of guys who looked for answers and found them in their motorcycle club. They draw strength and security from one another. It’s all part of the brotherhood.” And viewers can share in that brotherhood by buying a shirt for $26.95 plus $6.95 for shipping and handling. Although that might be a small price to pay for instantly becoming a combat veteran and an outlaw badass.

Sutter Flame War

The public argument between the LDMC and Sutter amused the nation and promoted the show for almost a week. Sutter thought the Discovery show was exploiting his FX show so he tweeted: “watched DEVIL’S RIDE. probably get in trouble for saying this, but I’m pretty sure my SOA actors could kick the shit out of this ‘real’ MC.”

A The Devils Ride cast member then told TMZ “I am concerned that Kurt’s creative mind is stuck in make-believe land with his recent comment on Twitter. Here’s a reality check for ya Kurt…. I am sending a personal invitation to your pretty-faced Kurt Cobain look-alike star Jax (portrayed by Charlie Hunnam) to come down to San Diego and prove your point. And tell him to wear those shiny white kicks too. I hope he’s a size 11, I could use some new shoes.”

Sutter tweeted back, “the reality is that hunnam is probably the toughest fucking dude on my set. newcastle street kid. he’s the last guy I’d ever pick to fight.”

So everybody on television has demons. Everybody who plays an outlaw on television is a bad ass.

Sutter went on to tweet, “i know devil’s ride has exploited SOA and is now using me for more exposure” and “LACTATING DEVILS, fake MC is now threatening actors. wow, they are so fucking BADASS. gigiddy. TMZ you complete me.”

Then, that tempest in a teapot ended as quickly as it began. Sutter has denied any hidden interest in The Devils Ride.

Let’s Get Physical

The best known example of tensions between the Laffing Devils and members of other motorcycle clubs was a fight on May 12 between Deron Jaffe, a member of the Peckerwoods Motorcycle Club, and two patched members and one supporter of the Laffing Devils. Jaffe explains, “I was defending myself against three of them and since I’ve seen them committing felonies on television, with no backlash from the police, I felt threatened by this self-admitted outlaw motorcycle gang.” Jaffe also has stated that the two patched Laffing Devils voluntarily surrendered their cuts to him with the understanding that they would be returned to their chapter president. Jaffe was arrested on two counts of suspicion of robbery and two counts of assault and battery. And, since he is a member of a motorcycle club that does not have its own television show Jaffe was also hit with five gang enhancements. So far the case has cost him about $25,000. He is currently free on a $276,000 bond.

One obvious question is which of the Laffing Devils pressed charges against Jaffe. Which raises a second question about whether a real motorcycle club handles its own business or has the police handle their business for them. And, a third question – did the Laffing Devils avoid gang enhancement charges by voluntarily removing their cuts before they fought Jaffe?

Meanwhile, in the other reality, the reality that is not all about empty materialism, the Peckerwoods Motorcycle Club will hold a fund raising party for Jaffe on Saturday, June 23 at Lacey J’s Saloon and Grille in Santee California. The bar is at 8861 North Magnolia in Santee. The party costs $25 to attend. About his current encounter with television reality, Jaffe has said, “There is no justice. Just us.” Multiple attempts by this page to talk to any current member of the Laffing Devils, cast members of the show and employees of Bischoff Hervey Entertainment Television have been ignored so it is unclear at this time whether members of the Laffing Devils will attend the fundraiser or whether the production company plans to send a camera crew.

Free Rusty

The Discovery Channel has repeatedly stated that the television show is about a “real” club. And, the show has tried to prove that the Laffing Devils are “real” with a couple of appearances by the very large, very real and apparently retired Hells Angel Rusty Coones.

Coones is the former President of the Orange County (California) charter of the Hells Angels. He was arrested on federal drug charges in June 1999. He was at least entrapped and he was sentenced to eight years in prison. One of his earliest and most stubborn defenders was celebrity bike builder Jesse James who was recently married to Sandra Bullock and who has some show business connections. After he got out of prison Coones made some show business connections, too.

Coones has always been a master bike builder and about a year ago he built a custom motorcycle, with a huge engine, for Kurt Sutter. Sutter filmed Coones and his business partner, Rodrigo Requejo, building the bike. “My first impression: ‘Fuck, he is big,’” Sutter told the OC Weekly. “Then I was struck by his enthusiasm and genuine love of bikes and the motorcycle subculture. Plus, he was a huge Sons fan. We became friends when he started talking about bikes.”

One episode in the first season of The Devils Ride featured Coones sending a group of Laffing Devils to repossess a bike for him in Las Vegas. Presumably, Coones was compensated for his appearance.

Coones learned to play the guitar in prison and he also began writing songs. He now plays lead guitar for a heavy metal group named Attika7. The group’s songs have been placed in episodes of the Sons of Anarchy and Coones second appearance in The Devils Ride was to play with his band in the Laffing Devils’ new club house. Producers obviously thought Coones’ appearance would lend credibility to the Laffing Devils outlaw image. For most viewers, Coones appearances probably did make the show seem more credible.

Next Season

The extent to which the Laffing Devils will participate in the next season of The Devils Ride is up in the air. It is a lock that something called the Sinister Mob Syndicate MC will be prominent whenever the show returns. The SMSMC is the new “club” founded by Laffing Devils founder Tommy “Gipsy” Quinn. The plot of this year’s season has been a bogus conflict between the Laffing Devils and the Sinister Mob. And, the registration of the Sinister Mob’s trademarks hints at when the show was actually renewed and what the show is really about. Please don’t be shocked but it turns out the show is not about journalism or truth. It is about clocking dollars.

The trademark registration for “Sinister Mob Syndicate MC” was filed by Bischoff Hervey Entertainment Television, LLC of 1754 14th Street in Santa Monica on May 18, 2012. That application lists Tommy Quinn as the last listed owner of the mark. That application was withdrawn and re-filed on May 24, 2012. The most recent application does not include Quinn’s name.

According to the more recent application the word mark or logotype remains unchanged. The club logogram, the picture mark, is described as “a skull design with small symbols around it and long horns that curve down behind the skull design. The words ‘Sinister Mob’ arching over the top of the skull design. The word ‘Syndicate’ under the skull design and the letters MC to the right of the skull design.”

The application states the marks will be used to sell “Motorcycle merchandise, namely, t-shirts, sweat shirts, hooded sweat shirts, tank-tops, sleeveless shirts, hats, caps, underwear, leather jackets, leather clothing, bandannas, gloves, patches, chaps, jackets, gloves, rain suits, coats, vests, shoes, boots and belts.” Right. Sinister Mob Syndicate MC underwear.

The domain name sinistermobsyndicate.com was also registered by someone named Collin Tims of Gualala, in northern California, on May 22. Attempts to reach Tims were unsuccessful but he has no obvious connection to the television show.

There Can Be Only One!

Last night’s season finale was as tooth grindingly painful to watch as the previous five episodes. Obviously, to borrow a phrase from Clint Eastwood, the show has “too much talk, talk. Not enough bang-bang.” The actors in this show talk too much because none of them have anything interesting to say. So, none of these guys is exactly Gary Cooper.

Although, there were two semi-real moments in last night’s show. One portrayed the tension that always pops up for patch holders who are committed to both their wives and their clubs. Since motorcycle clubs are most of all a way of being a man, the logic of much of what happens in them eludes women. And last night’s show featured almost a minute of wives complaining about their husband’s commitment to their club. The second semi-true moment, added as a footnote to the episode, showed club reaction to the death of a club brother. This addendum was spray painted with phony pathos, maybe for the benefit of humanoids who don’t understand that the death of a family member is usually sad.

Everything else in the show was as blatantly scripted, blocked, acted and recorded as an episode of General Hospital, which is what the The Devils Ride really wants to be. Most of this concluding episode was about the divorce between Tommy “Gipsy” Quinn and the club he founded. There was an attempted repossession of club property that was obviously scripted and photographed in takes. New club President “Billy” tells old club President “Gipsy,” “there’s only one grey and red club in this town.” Gipsy vows not to back down. Laffing Devils openly talk about going to “war.” So a kid could write next season’s story bible.

Meanwhile, a real club member named Deron Jaffe is in a world of legal hurt because he stumbled into TV land while being what the Laffing Devils pretend to be.

But give credit where credit is due. The Devils Ride has accomplished something in six weeks that Sons of Anarchy tried and failed to accomplish for four years. And that is, make Sons of Anarchy look like Hamlet.

 

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252 Responses to “The Devils Ride Renewed”

  1. Drew Thompson Says:

    Wow, I can’t believe I read the whole thread, and now I dare to add my two cents!

    Well, I would never try to pose myself as a bad ass, just a plain non-affiliated biker who rides a metric cruiser and the only patch I wear says “Joe Rocket” (brand of the jacket). Harley, Ninja, or Vespa, I respect them all. (You never really know who’s on that Vespa!)

    I was not aware of the Season 1 of the fake Devil’s Ride, but could not believe the commercials for upcoming episodes of this show. Two rival “clubs” having a rumble. Something about some guy’s Harley being dragged down the road. Tattoos being burned off. The kind of stuff you see on SOA, but this stuff is supposed to be “the real deal”.

    So, you mean to tell me I’m supposed to believe that these are real “outlaw MC’s” doing all the things MC’s “always do” (according to the stereotype being sold here and seen on SOA), and they’ve allowed full camera crews present to shoot and televise it all? Maybe it’s because I’m from the L.A. area, but I thought EVERYONE knew that you can’t have TV without cameras, and usually those cameras are accompanied by full on crews. (Lighting, sound, etc. Well, even on a low budget project, at least three people?)

    Hell, I could tell from the previews, this had to be crap, but exactly what kind of crap? Just happened to catch me with a laptop on and Google at the ready, so I had to see what the Interwebs had to say about this, because I thought maybe it was a “fake” reality show like “The Office” (scripted show with professional actors pretending to be a reality show as opposed to scripted show with bad actors pretending to be real).

    Imagine my surprise this is supposed to be “real”, and the LD are a “real” MC. Then to find out even the bike being dragged was a “stunt Honda” filling in for a Harley. (I didn’t watch close enough and didn’t see that actual episode.) Yet another fake, contrived “reality” show, eh? Thought so. They just get more and more faked and “acted” than in the early days.

    Anyway, as I said, I’m not a bad ass, and in fact, I’m a computer nerd. (You know, the world still needs nerds to fix all the technology so you can surf the web and buy Harley parts on eBay.) I’m smart enough to know that even if I get that Softail I want some day, I’ll still just be a computer nerd on a Harley. There are plenty of ’em out there, and we mean no harm to anyone. I think most of us are smart enough not to put on fake “cuts”, but this site was still an eye opener for me.

    My observation has been that a lot of stuff on TV looks real and believable if you know NOTHING about the subject matter. I’m not a doctor, so I’ve enjoyed watching medical shows in the past. But, of course, people in health care laugh their ASSES off at these shows, even the ones that were supposed to be “realistic” because they have all those highly paid consultants to tell them how it “really is”.

    Being a computer geek, I get irritated at how computers and technology are portrayed on TV and movies even though nowadays everyone has a computer or five at their house. I’ll sit there and say “They’re talking about some futuristic government supercomputer, but that’s a 20 year old disk rack! My laptop has more power than that!”

    The difference is, of course, no IT professional wants to do serious damage to the people who insist on adding bleeps and bloops and extra blinking lights to fake computer screens that every sixth grader and their grandma should know is fake.

    Man, it’s unbelievable how the rest of TV is just as fake as this stupid show. American Guns… I can tell most of the moments on that show are not real, even though I believe those are real business owners. They’re just not good actors. Every week it seems there’s some big deal where he has to fly his helicopter with a suitcase full of cash and make that big purchase with that dramatic “bam!” slap of the cash. Don’t even get me started on the over-the-top pyrotechnics whenever they go shooting. Really? A paper target blows up in a giant orange mushroom cloud when struck by a .45 cal bullet? (I know I said I’m a computer nerd, but I have shot a .45! I know how that works.) I imagine at least half of the people who watch that show probably know more about guns than the producers and editors. So, was that computer effects, or did they hire a pyrotechnic crew to wire up the targets?

    At least American Chopper, in the early years, seemed more honest. I think the fights and the bike builds were real. (Say what you will about the quality, what do I know from custom choppers? As a TV show…). Then it got more “produced”, and they said “Fuck the bikes, let’s have more fights and destruction. That’s what our viewers want.”

    Anyway, just more TV fakery. Too bad this particular show just happens to piss off people who really don’t like to be made fun of, and really don’t like fake “tee vee” versions of themselves riding around pretending to be hard core.

    I once bought a Sons of Anarchy T-Shirt because I’m a fan of the show (though I know real MC’s laugh at that like real doctors laughed at “ER”). When I went to the Love Ride soon thereafter, even I, naive as I am just instinctively thought maybe it would be a bad idea to wear SOA apparel to a biker event on my metric cruiser, especially around such a wide variety of real bikers, 99 and 1 percenters alike. I’d hate to think anyone would think I was trying to pretend I was someone I’m not, or took myself as anything more than just some guy who likes bikes. I would be more honest wearing my “Three Stooges” shirt (which I did), and no one fucked with me!

    Anywhoo, I totally get the frustration in seeing something you know and care about carelessly faked for the TV cameras. Hopefully nobody gets hurt because they thought they were just doing a show no worse than “Dirty Jobs” or “Pawn Stars”.

    Oh, don’t get me started on “Hard Snore Pawn”, with the guy throwing his fake computer monitor on the ground, and it was obvious to me they pulled all the screws out of the sucker so pieces would fly apart for dramatic effect. Boy was he pretending to be pissed! (“Cut! OK, that was very real, but it needs more. Can we wire a little explosive in there? I want to see sparks! Great Reality TV, people!”)

    Back to Devil’s Deride. Yes. I did find and watch Season 1 Episode 1 to see how this whole thing started. “We’re drawing too much attention, and the cops are bugging us.” Gee, you think that has something to do with the huge camera crew, lights, and sound people crowding around you? “A photographer is bugging our OL’s and hit the prospect” Really? You’re already famous enough for paparazzi and the show hasn’t aired yet? That has to be a WWE character. “We have to find a new clubhouse because we’re getting too many cops.” Really? For what? Oh, you’re pretending to be outlaws! Besides, there’s not enough room to house the production company, install all the lights, directors booth, all that. (Pay attention to any bike or car building show, and you’ll occasionally see the studio lights they hung in the shop.) Oh: American Chopper already did the “we have to find a bigger place” bit. Twice, I think!

    Honestly, if they had just portrayed this harmless MC as just guys who like to ride, and kept the show about the bikes, the shop, the rides, and occasional harmless “drama” like the one where someone forgets his anniversary (classic sit-com plot they did on American Restoration), or they threw a surprise birthday party for the guy who hates birthday parties (did it on Graveyard Carz), or they have to blow up a junk bike (classic American Chopper, and and everyone likes explosions), I might have been a fan… If it was done well enough to hold my interest. (Show me some more cool bikes, dammit!)

    So, thanks to you guys here, now I have to watch the rest of ’em just so I can see the “infamous” bar incident, which I’m surprised to hear about. I would have thought the producers would have tighter control and not let the real world intrude on their carefully crafted “reality” show. I’m SURE they had hired security like Pinkerton on set. All these shows do, that’s how I get kicked off so many shows I wander into in L.A.! (I’m a TV and movie geek who’s attracted to cameras and film crews, so I’m familiar with location set security!)

    Wow, look at the time I’ve wasted. I’ve got an exhaust to install. (Yeah, computer geek but I can handle a bolt on Cobra exhaust.)

    Umm, Keep the shiny side up… Ah… Live to Ride… You know…

    By the way, it’s a fake name from another FX show.

    Later.

  2. Big D Says:

    Ill be straight up.I knew this was at least partially scripted but was on the fence about the realism and i liked it for what it is.That is, until i researched it and read this article and a few others.These jackholes are shit.The story of the Peckerwood mC member really pissed me off.The way this world works theres no way this shit is going down without someone gettin paid off.Otherwise this shit wouldnt even have got off the ground.Theirs rules in this world.

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